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Ad Banner Creation, Execution & Design Techniques G Caruso


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Ad Banner Creation, Execution & Design Techniques G Caruso

  1. 1. Best Practices and Recommendations for Creative Execution and Design on the Web or How do you find an audience who will care about what you have to say? Presented by: Glen Caruso Firecracker Digital Group [email_address] 404.788.2008 January 2010
  2. 2. Today <ul><li>Who is Glen Caruso? </li></ul><ul><li>The Challenge for Marketers </li></ul><ul><li>Design and Execution Best Practices </li></ul><ul><li>Connecting to Your Consumer </li></ul><ul><li>Example: Home Manager target audience </li></ul>
  3. 3. The Challenge for Marketers/Agencies Today <ul><li>Overwhelmed and Jaded consumer </li></ul><ul><li>How do you stand out with parity products? </li></ul><ul><li>“ Banner Blindness” </li></ul><ul><li>Advertising is more accountable </li></ul><ul><li>How do I increase sales for my client??? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Selling Successfully with Online Creative <ul><li>Understand your goal with the target audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What are they doing and why? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How do they spend their time? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How do you want to engage them in your brand? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>3 keys to successful online engagement and interaction: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Right Time – Where are they in the purchase cycle? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Right Place – Right Mindset: Is this message relevant to me? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Right Message – Execution and Offer </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Branding <ul><li>Research </li></ul><ul><li>Destinations </li></ul><ul><li>Travel Search </li></ul><ul><li>Feature programming </li></ul><ul><li>Consumer Reviews </li></ul><ul><li>Book </li></ul><ul><li>Qualified Leads </li></ul><ul><li>Reservations </li></ul><ul><li>Driving Booking Sales </li></ul><ul><li>Shop </li></ul><ul><li>Browse Deals & Specials </li></ul><ul><li>Compare prices </li></ul>Consumers are Throughout Purchase Cycle The Purchase Funnel Which part of the funnel are your banners targeting?
  6. 6. Online Ad Execution – Best Practices <ul><li>Where does this information come from? </li></ul><ul><li>AOL and MSN analytics of campaign performance </li></ul><ul><li>TACODA behavioral web user analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Hundreds of campaigns, billions of impressions </li></ul><ul><li>Industry trades and experts </li></ul><ul><li>Testing! </li></ul>
  7. 7. Online Ad Execution – Best Practices
  8. 8. Left to Right <ul><li>Design the banners to flow from left to right and from top to bottom, in keeping with how most members “read” an online page and individual units on a page. </li></ul><ul><li>Attract attention by positioning a clear image on the left side of the banner, leading to the message in the middle of the banner. </li></ul><ul><li>Position a strong call-to-action in the lower right, to take advantage of this natural left-to-right flow. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Call to Action <ul><li>Consumers are accustomed to passive forms of advertising where interaction with your brand is not an option. You must remind them that they can engage with you and your product, through the ad. </li></ul><ul><li>Use an easy and contextually appropriate action verb (e.g. Click, Get, View, Search) as opposed to more arduous verbs (e.g. Register, Enroll, Learn). </li></ul><ul><li>Position the call-to-action in the lower-right corner of the banner (or immediately below the headline, when designing tower ads). </li></ul>Expands to…
  10. 10. Question and Answer <ul><li>Asking a question invites response, especially in the interactive environment. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask a question that evokes a personal need, fear or desire. Emotion produces response. </li></ul><ul><li>Pose a problem, inviting the click to reveal the solution. </li></ul><ul><li>Present a multiple choice question, compelling the member to select from several responses. </li></ul><ul><li>Remember: The best questions will set the stage for how your product will benefit the consumer. How can you address their needs? </li></ul>
  11. 11. Colors and Fonts <ul><li>High contrast between the background and copy tones allows your message to “pop” visually. </li></ul><ul><li>Try using lighter colors for the background; white and gray tend to work best. Blue, black and red are solid choices for your headline and supporting copy. </li></ul><ul><li>Short, simple copy (2-6 words) presented in an easy-to-read font works best. Avoid “script” and intricate cursive types. </li></ul><ul><li>Employing standard capitalization style or all caps is your choice. Either works well. </li></ul><ul><li>Primary colors have historically worked well, but organic colors are starting to gain traction with web users. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Interactive Elements <ul><li>Web users are conditioned to respond to “system style” interactive elements, mirroring those they encounter in their daily use of websites and computer programs. </li></ul><ul><li>This form of call-to-action can be presented as underlined blue text, a pull down menu, 3D style gray buttons or a search box. </li></ul><ul><li>These elements can be truly functional (e.g. a pull-down that opens to reveal a list of products) or simple graphic images of functional elements. </li></ul><ul><li>Product options, benefits, features, models…can be presented through these calls-to-action. </li></ul>This ad… NOT this ad…
  13. 13. Animation Techniques <ul><li>Animate the headline or call-to-action, not the background or supporting graphics. You want to draw attention to what will incite reaction. </li></ul><ul><li>Every frame of your banner should contain enough information to understand your offer, as well as a means of response. Avoid elaborate animations that delay the delivery of your core message. </li></ul><ul><li>Simple blinking or fade-in/out animations have proven the most successful. If you choose to employ a “storyboard” approach (where you deliver multiple headlines in several frames) make sure that each frame contains a compelling and actionable message – especially the latter. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Copy and Contextual Relevance to Page Content <ul><li>One or two word variations – to customize copy for the topic/task of the page – can significantly impact results. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Using Ad Space to “Self-Publish” Advertorial <ul><li>Make your ad banner relevant to content on the page </li></ul><ul><li>Make it blend in! </li></ul>This ad did better!
  16. 16. Creative and Site Synergy <ul><li>Creating a sense of continuity between the creative and the landing page can be among the most powerful techniques for stimulation conversion activity. </li></ul><ul><li>This is easily achieved by mirroring graphic, copy and design elements of the destination site within the banner. </li></ul><ul><li>The better the creative is at foreshadowing content of the landing page, the more satisfied (*and often more apt to convert) the consumer is likely to be with the content delivered. </li></ul><ul><li>Developing points of synergy can also be a reciprocal process – with successful executions of either the banner or site informing future iterations of the other. </li></ul>Ad Website
  17. 17. Other Observations…and generalizations <ul><li>Relevancy and Benefit to web user are key </li></ul><ul><li>ALWAYS a Call to Action in the banner! </li></ul><ul><li>Visuals in ads are CRITICAL – they are recalled better and longer than text </li></ul><ul><li>Keep ad uncluttered, clear and simple </li></ul><ul><li>Close ups of eyes and, then, people, work well – they draw user into message </li></ul><ul><li>Show someone USING your product </li></ul><ul><li>Best performing type/background combinations (contrast): </li></ul><ul><li>Black lettering on Red background </li></ul><ul><li>Black on Yellow </li></ul><ul><li>Primary colors still strong. Organic color combinations gaining </li></ul><ul><li>Client logo must MEAN something to user </li></ul>
  18. 18. Other Observations…and generalizations <ul><li>“ Free” offer draws in wrong type of consumers (“clickers”, not “converters”. (Exception: Coupons. These tend to be redeemed) </li></ul><ul><li>In car ads…always show the car…and specific FEATURES sell! </li></ul><ul><li>Puppies and kids enhance engagement (Use if relevant, though! Or you’ll get “Clickers”) </li></ul><ul><li>A woman shown in an ad draws in more women…and men! </li></ul><ul><li>Business targets: Focus on attributes, not price </li></ul><ul><li>Shopper target responds better to price </li></ul><ul><li>Consider Re-targeting and sequential messaging </li></ul>
  19. 19. Other Observations…and generalizations <ul><li>For Conversion/ROI/Response Goals: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Specific benefit and reason to click </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Client’s logo (and legal language) won’t help conversion – unless a luxury brand </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Always link ROI ad to a specific interior page re product </li></ul></ul><ul><li>For Branding: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Banner should not be general…talk about a key product or key attribute </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No problem if branding ad links to landing page (so they can explore!) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Logo definitely included! </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Example: <ul><li>Who is their primary audience? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Home Managers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What motivates them and takes up their time? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Home </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Job </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Family </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mindset: Being a working parent is hard…I need help! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Self-set”: How can I be the best for my family? And for myself? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How will you reach this target? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tell them how you can help them. </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. What Takes Up A Woman’s Day? Female Internet Users Study Working Women Study Strong performing creative touches upon these things…
  22. 22. Games Marketer: Tyson Objective: Ensure a fun and playful engaging consumer experience, consistent with the TV campaign for female target Communication Vehicle: MSN Games custom Bejeweled game Creative Relevancy: Chores, Preparing Meals, Relaxing Executional Style: - Relaxing diversion to my day - Interactive “Strategy” game genre (women) - Repeat of Tyson Chicken character/logo - Close-up of the YES - Instant WIN - High Contrast RED/YELLOW stand out
  23. 23. ”Starting a Family” Sponsorship Marketer: Huggies Objective: Generate product awareness and interest of NEW “baby shaped” Huggies in a targeted, contextually relevant environment Communication Vehicle: MSN Life Events Sponsorship Creative Relevancy: Family, Chores, Child Care Executional Style: - Pictures of babies SELL! - San Serif font - BENEFIT – no leaks! - Primary color – RED - Marketer used bottom ad block to “self-publish” providing content & relevancy - “WIN” - Clickable HUGGIES logo always on bottom RIGHT
  24. 24. Ads within News Channel Marketer: Dove Objective: Dove is helping raise beautiful, secure women Communication Vehicle: MSNBC Homepage & Today Show Creative Relevancy: Family, TV watching, Personal Errands Executional Style: - Pictures of children sell/minimal text - Close-up of face/eyes – draw users in - Consistency of image as users click through (tilted, girls face repeats) - Addresses personal self esteem issues, fears, anxieties – “Am I Normal? Is My Child okay? Am I a Good Mother?” - Question/”I believe” format makes users unconsciously think …”Hmmm? Do I agree with this statement?” - Clickable Dove logo in bottom right corner
  25. 25. Online Video <ul><li>Marketer: Kraft, Macaroni & Cheese </li></ul><ul><li>Objective: Engage the target consumer with the brand messaging and high energy tone by leveraging the TV creative, as well as encourage her to explore a variety of product uses and health benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Communication Vehicle </li></ul><ul><li>MSN Video, with use of both TV creative and display ad with links to brand site </li></ul><ul><li>Creative Relevancy: Family, TV watching, Chores, Preparing Meals </li></ul><ul><li>Executional Style: - Pictures of children sell - Call to Action: Recipes= Solutions for ME </li></ul><ul><li>- TV works with info - Clickable element in bottom right corner - Primary colors – BLUE/Yellow – are bold </li></ul><ul><li>- Am I a good/the best mom? messaging: “Hey! Good moms serve healthy foods like THIS to their kids!” </li></ul>
  26. 26. Final Thoughts <ul><li>Every brand & client is different, there is no perfect system. </li></ul><ul><li>TEST, LEARN, REAPPLY </li></ul><ul><li>When you test, change ONE variable within ad unit at a time! (A/B tests) </li></ul><ul><li>Set concrete metrics for your creative. What do you want a web user to do? What measurable action(s) do you want them to take and WHICH ONE is most important? </li></ul><ul><li>It takes time to optimize and hone your message online. Your ROI will be higher at first, but will decrease over time as you learn what works. </li></ul><ul><li>Last, don’t immediately blame the publisher or the network for poor performance…creative execution and offer are 2/3 of the reason web users click and convert. Optimal placement is only 1/3. </li></ul>
  27. 27. Thank You! Contact me with your thoughts and questions! Glen Caruso Firecracker Digital Group [email_address] 404.788.2008
  28. 28. Top 10 Best Practices <ul><li>Design left to right </li></ul><ul><li>Always include a call-to-action </li></ul><ul><li>Use high contrast between background color & type </li></ul><ul><li>Use easy-to-read san-serif fonts </li></ul><ul><li>Include interactive elements </li></ul><ul><li>Animate text alone, or text with graphics, </li></ul><ul><li>but never graphics alone </li></ul><ul><li>Use compelling copy that teases, surprises, asks questions </li></ul><ul><li>Keep text to a minimum for quick digestion of the message </li></ul><ul><li>Tailor messages to be contextually relevant </li></ul><ul><li>Local relevance heightens response </li></ul>
  29. 29. Average Deltas 103% Increase in Brand Awareness 88% Increase in Purchase Intent Source: Dynamic Logic MarketNorms Rich Media Performance vs. Standard Media Executions
  30. 30. Rich Media Resources <ul><li>iMedia – Rich Media link </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Atlas Rich Media </li></ul><ul><li>DoubleClick </li></ul><ul><li>Eyeblaster </li></ul><ul><li>EyeWonder </li></ul><ul><li>Interpolls </li></ul><ul><li>Klipmart </li></ul><ul><li>Pointroll </li></ul><ul><li>Unicast </li></ul>More commonly used Rich Media types
  31. 31. Driving Strong Click Through Give consumers a reason to click… <ul><li>Ensure there is something of value for consumers to experience once they click. </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on strong & clear click call to action within the panel. </li></ul><ul><li>Entice users to click by starting an activity within the ad and finish it on the site side: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Quiz/poll questions within ad, results on site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer a few enticing video within the ad, then click to the site for more. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More intrusive auto display/floating executions tend to drive stronger CTR. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t trick consumers into clicking. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Driving Strong Interaction Rate Give consumers a reason to engage… <ul><li>Ensure banner call to action is: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Specific </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy to find/large enough to read </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Uses “rollover” (vs. click to expand) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Well-defined (but not too large) hot spots for easy rollover action. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Regardless of banner animation, the option to rollover should always be available </li></ul><ul><li>If ad includes multiple panels, feature options within the banner to put the consumer in control of what they want to experience. </li></ul>
  33. 33. Driving Strong Interaction Time Give consumers a reason to engage…for a long time! <ul><li>Include multiple messages, activities, videos, etc. within the ad </li></ul><ul><li>Allow consumers to interact with the message making it uniquely relevant to them: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Interactive game to learn more about the characters, storyline, etc, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to view multiple video unique to online (in addition to just the TV promo) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personalize the message </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include a quiz/poll questions with real time results. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Rule of thumb – how long does it take you to experience the ad? </li></ul>
  34. 34. <ul><li>Synced Video </li></ul><ul><li>Downloads </li></ul><ul><li>Text messages </li></ul><ul><li>Product Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Dynamic Polling </li></ul><ul><li>Expanding video </li></ul><ul><li>Green Screen </li></ul><ul><li>Photo Gallery </li></ul><ul><li>Product Quiz </li></ul><ul><li>Data Collection </li></ul><ul><li>Games </li></ul><ul><li>Coupons </li></ul><ul><li>Click to Call </li></ul><ul><li>Email Reminder / Calendar </li></ul><ul><li>RSS Feed </li></ul><ul><li>Buy Tickets </li></ul><ul><li>Print Option </li></ul><ul><li>Sliding Video </li></ul><ul><li>Reminders </li></ul><ul><li>Interactive Video </li></ul><ul><li>Full Screen Video </li></ul><ul><li>Sweepstakes/Promotions </li></ul><ul><li>Store Locator </li></ul><ul><li>PushDown </li></ul><ul><li>Photo Upload </li></ul><ul><li>Forced Video </li></ul><ul><li>Hot Spotting </li></ul><ul><li>Instant Email </li></ul><ul><li>Calculator </li></ul><ul><li>Free Sample </li></ul><ul><li>Gutters </li></ul><ul><li>Polling </li></ul><ul><li>Dynamic Data </li></ul><ul><li>Wireless Alerts </li></ul><ul><li>Send to friend </li></ul><ul><li>And much more! </li></ul>Click on images in slide mode to view demos Expandable Universal 100K+ Snap-Back Floater Local Delivery Polite Download Pre-Expanded Dynamic Data More Rich Media Examples (Pointroll)
  35. 35. More Rich Media Examples (Interpolls) Question-based interactivity CPG: - Print recipe/send to a friend - video, email signups, downloads Financial: - tabbed content, resource locator - interactive flash    CSR:  - video, store locator - interactive flash Auto: - videos, gallery, downloads    - half banner expanding video Standard Rich Media CPG: - rollover to play video CSR:  - expandable Auto:  - expandable w/ rotating creatives
  36. 36. More Rich Media Examples (EyeWonder) Automotive: Toyota Yaris - AIM Buddy ad – must be viewed in IE Toyota Teen Driver Safety: Nissan Altima Balancing Act - Interactive Game - Viral / Send-to-a-friend feature   Nissan Grand Finale: - Interactive Game (Build your own Fireworks show) Nissan Sentra (Dancing) - Interactive Game - Viral / Send-to-a-friend feature Mazda Speed 6: - Zip code locator - Downloads Landrover: -Mouseover video panel functionality Nissan M Headlights: - Full-page takeover
  37. 37. More Rich Media Examples (EyeWonder) Consumer Packaged Goods: Bertolli: - Print recipes directly from banner Lays: - Synched roadblock - Interactivity between units Coke Zero: - Multi-video execution - Downloadable video clips from banner - Send-to-friend functionality Budweiser Ringtone: - Downloadable ring tone Casual Dining: Chili’s Margarita Madness: Chili’s Margarita Madness Expandable: Chili’s Margarita Madness Floating Ad Unit: Bucca Di Beppo: Bucca Di Beppo:
  38. 38. Search Recommendations <ul><li>Contact Google, Yahoo!/Overture and Microsoft Live Search for latest paid textlink creation tips and suggestions to maximize performance of keyword terms. </li></ul>